May 10, 2012
In addition to their success on the playing fields and in the classrooms, Emmanuel student-athletes are actively involved each year in numerous community service and volunteer activities. The College's focus on service learning is a cornerstone routed in the mission of Emmanuel and embraced by the Saints athletic teams. Throughout the 2011-12 academic year, student-athletes engaged in various events, both through individual efforts and as team-bonding activities, which allowed the Saints to give back to the community. The meaningful experiences have taught the Saints life lessons and complimented their classroom learning.
The Saints' service activities have run the gamut and included everything from fund-raising efforts and physical labor to week-long immersion programs. Eight student-athletes, one team manager and one assistant coach took part in the College's Alternative Spring Break, coordinated by the Office of Campus Ministry. During the week, these individuals opted to forgo their trips home or to tropical spring break destinations and engaged in service learning experiences in various locations throughout the United States. Among the volunteers were those who went to Phoenix, Arizona, including Albert Hayle (Assistant Men's Basketball Coach), Ivan Barrera (Men's Soccer), Brittany Sorice (Cross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track & Field) and Greg St. Denis (Cross Country, Indoor Track & Field). Traveling to serve in New Orleans, Louisiana was Wesley Cowles (Cross Country, Indoor Track & Field), Emily Abelson (Women's Soccer), Zachary Caron (Men's Volleyball) and Brett Pettis (Men's Volleyball). Jordan Coulombe (Indoor and Outdoor Track & Field) was a student leader on the trip to Wheeling, West Virginia, while Lance Evans (Women's Basketball Team Manager) did his Alternative Spring Break in Boston, Mass.
Many of Emmanuel's athletic teams participated in a "campus clean-up day" this spring, which was held during National Volunteer Week and sponsored by the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. In addition, the Saints Women's Tennis Team raised approximately \$1,000.00 during breast cancer awareness month in the fall and participated in the American Cancer Society's Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk on the Esplanade for the second year in a row. Two members of the tennis squad (Jenna Reid and Jenny Konecnik) ran a half marathon to raise money for a Sisters of Notre Dame School in Africa.
The Emmanuel Women's Volleyball Team worked with the American Red Cross to conduct two blood drives on campus during the Fall and Spring semesters. The team also participated in the blood drive at Fenway Park on Sunday, September 11, 2011.
The Saints Men's Lacrosse Team volunteered at both the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk, as well as at the Greater Boston Food Bank. Along with the Tennis and Men's Lacrosse Teams, the Emmanuel Men's Basketball Team was also involved in the Breast Cancer Walk last Fall, preparing lunch bags and snacks for the thousands of walkers. Emmanuel's Dance Team performed for all of the participants at the Hatch Shell on the Esplanade.
The Emmanuel Men's Basketball Team invited the Nativity Prep School into the Gymnasium of the Jean Yawkey Center for a volunteer hoop clinic this year. The gym also served as the host site for "Boston R.O.C.K.S.," a sort of field day for City of Boston Schools, in which several Saints student-athletes took time out of their day to volunteer.
The Men's Soccer Team volunteered at Boston Shines, a citywide neighborhood clean up and community service volunteer program. The Indoor and Outdoor Track & Field Teams served at Cradles to Crayons Giving Factory, a non-profit organization, which collects new and gently used items for children of all ages and then creates and donates care packages for those in need. Several members of the EC Track & Field Teams also volunteer at the 116th Boston Marathon. The Saints, who have served at the finish line on Boylston Street for several years now, were involved in assisting with the Boston Athletic Association's drug-testing programs for the marathon's elite runners.
Emmanuel's Men's Volleyball Team was extremely active in the "Spring Day of Service," an annual program sponsored by various areas of the College including: Athletics, Campus Ministry, Residence Life, Student Activities and Multicultural Programs, Student Government Association, and the Jean Yawkey Center for Community Leadership. Groups of students came together one Saturday this April and provided service to our community partners throughout the city of Boston. In the past, Emmanuel students have provided service to St. Ambrose Family Shelter, OLPH Mission Grammar School, Franklin Park Zoo, and the Muddy River Clean Up. This year, the Saints Men's Volleyball Team volunteered with clean-up activities at St. Mary of the Angel Parish.
The Saints Club Baseball Team conducted a recycling activity in the stands at Fenway Park this year and facilitated a 50/50 raffle with all proceeds going to the Red Sox Foundation.
The vast service involvement of Saints student-athletes during the 2011-12 academic year, has not been unlike any other year at Emmanuel. Following the mission set forth by the College's founders, the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, Emmanuel students are focused on community building and embrace this focus, with 85% of them participating in community service in any one year. Student-athletes are just one subset of the student population as a whole, but campus, city and nation-wide, the Emmanuel Saints have been ever-present in the community and are committed to giving back.